Sortilège - Biography




The band was formed in 1981 with Christian Augustin on vocals, Daniel Lapp on bass, Jean-Philippe (Bob) Dumont on drums and Stephane Dumont and Didier Demajean on guitars. Originally bands name was Bloodwave. The following year, the quality of their repertoire and their concerts in France improved so they were hired as an opening act for heavy metal band Def Leppard on their tour in France. Since then Sortilège was very noticeable. Since none of the French label companies wanted to offer them a contract they signed for a Holland label company Rave-On Records. A few months later, the band recorded an EP simply titled Sortilège which was very successful. Experts do not hesitate to compare the voice of Christian Augustin to heavy metal stars of the era like Rob Halford or Bruce Dickinson.

With this initial success, the band signed to the French record label Madrigal. A few weeks later, the band went to Germany to record their first album Métamorphose. This was again a success, especially in France and Germany. The group was now seen as a succession of French hard-rock bands Satan Jokers, Vulcan and H-Bomb.

With the success of Métamorphose, the band played in many international festivals and became very popular in Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Belgium and of course, in France.

Aware of its growing success, Sortilège decided to conquer the world, but since their lyrics were on French it was a handicap to sell records in non-francophone country. They decide to re-record their album Metamorphose in English. But since Christian Augustin sings much better in his native tongue, the English version of the record sells badly everywhere except in Japan.

In 1986, Sortilège released their last album Larmes de Héros. Like the previous album, it was recorded in Germany. At the same time they recorded an English version. The English version of the record didn't sold at all, since the German public preferred the French version. For many fans, this was the band's best album, some even consider it as the greatest French heavy metal album. This album was much less aggressive than the previous but more melodic. Unfortunately for the band, their work was not rewarded, fans were disappointed with the loss of aggressiveness.

Tired of the lack of public support, difficulties encountered in relation to record companie, Sortilège members decided to separate.